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Financial Assurance Mandates: A Mechanism to Prevent Climate-Induced Industrial Disaster

August 2018

Citation: 48 ELR 10678

Issue: 8

Author: Liz Williams Russell

The challenge of inducing risk reduction and adaptation practice is not a purely environmental one, but the vast impacts of acute and chronic environmental events and changes associated with climate change extend across socioeconomic landscapes. Elevated environmental hazards to communities are increasingly present with severe storms, both inland and coastal. Should a set of conditions evolve to accommodate this challenge, Financial Assurance Mandates could prove to be a valuable option to reduce risks. Should insurers prove interested in providing industrial insurance to induce mitigation, should policymakers prove willing to require industry to insure themselves for the costs associated with climate-based hazards, should flood risk-based modeling capacity receive investment to effectively illustrate flood risk, and should comprehensive mechanisms for valuation of risk response arise, Financial Assurance Mandates could prove to be a valuable tool in a larger adaptation toolkit.

Liz Williams Russell is the Coastal Community Resilience Director at the Foundation for Louisiana.

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